Columbo (1971–2003)
41 user 6 critic

Dagger of the Mind 

In London, a respected Shakespearean acting duo cover up the unintended killing of their producer.


Richard Quine


Jackson Gillis (teleplay by), Richard Levinson (story by) | 3 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Falk ... Columbo
Richard Basehart ... Nicholas Frame
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Tanner
Bernard Fox ... Det. Chief Supt. William Durk
John Williams ... Sir Roger Haversham
Honor Blackman ... Lillian Stanhope
John Fraser ... Det. Sgt. O'Keefe
Richard Pearson ... Diver
Arthur Malet ... Fenwick
Harvey Jason ... The Director
Ronald Long ... Mr. Jones
Hedley Mattingly Hedley Mattingly ... Customs Man (as Hedley Mattingley)
John Orchard ... Country Constable
Peter Church Peter Church ... Constable
Walker Edmiston ... Gardener


Lillian Stanhope and Nicholas Frame are two famed actors in London, a venerated husband and wife team set to act in 'Macbeth'. Producer Sir Roger Haversham had been Lillian's lover but finds out he has been deceived by the couple and is ab out to cancel their widely anticipated and lucrative engagement. During a dressing room brawl between the three, Haversham is accidentally killed when he is hit in the head by a projectile thrown by Stanhope. As Haversham had not been seen by any of the cast or crew before he entered the couple's dressing room, the couple decide to hide his body and later take the corpse to his mansion and stage his "accidental" death. However, Lt. Columbo, in London to learn about new investigation methods used by Scotland Yard, smells something fishy in this supposed accident. Written by Baldinotto da Pistoia

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

26 November 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alter schützt vor Torheit nicht See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Fraser tells Columbo near the end that "a policeman's lot is not a happy one." This phrase is a quote from Gilbert & Sullivan's 'Pirates of Penzance.' See more »


The sign outside the theatre advertises "In memoriam of Sir Roger Haversham". In Latin, "In memoriam" means "in memory of", so the sign translated into English would say "In memory of of (sic) Sir Roger Haversham". See more »


Lillian Stanhope: I've always wanted to be in a horror movie.
Nicholas Frame: Well, you certainly qualify.
Lillian Stanhope: Thanks.
See more »

Crazy Credits

John Fraser, who is Scottish, and Richard Pearson, who is Welsh, are credited as "From London - Special Guest Stars". See more »


The British Grenadiers
[British march from 1600s]
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User Reviews

A favourite Columbo
2 June 2004 | by vaughan-birbeckSee all my reviews

This may not be the best ever Columbo episode but as it's set in England it remains a favourite of mine.

Apart from the plot the main interest lies in location spotting. We get scenes at London airport and outside New Scotland Yard near Victoria Street which means Columbo could pass Buckingham Palace on the way.

The "London Wax Museum" is actually the Imperial College Library, near the Science Museum in South Kensington (also used as a location in "The Ipcress File"), but it does allow an impressive closing shot of the Albert Hall. We also get to see the Royal Court Theatre and lots of English rain.

Apart from that I'm not sure how much of the film was shot in the UK. The stately home has a definite California feel.

This is a good Columbo entry, only marred by the usual American view of the British: we're either "Pip, pip, old boy" types or " Gor blimey, gavner" cockneys. At the time this was made the top cop show in the UK was 'The Sweeney'. Columbo meets Regan and Carter, now that would be worth watching: "Oh, just one more thing sir,'re nicked!"

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